National plan to address missing, murdered indigenous people

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GRESHAM, Wis. (WBAY) - The nation's Attorney General William Barr is rolling out new measures to address cases of missing and murdered indigenous people.

This as the FBOI seeks leads in a 1986 murder case on the Menominee Indian Reservation.

Earlier this year, the Menominee Tribe held a remembrance for Rae Elaine Tourtillott, last seen attending a birthday party 33 years ago in Keshena.

The FBI offering a $15,000 dollar reward for information leading to an arrest and conviction in the case.

Barr's national initiative coordinates 11 U.S. attorney's offices to develop protocols for a streamlined law enforcement response to indigenous women cases.

A non-profit named Menikanakhem, ran by indigenous women, believes their people are being targeted.

"How many families don't have that closure that they need to know what happened to their loved one?” Community Organizer Maria Haskins asked.

The questions are many and the answers are slow to come.

Indigenous women are being killed and disappearing and their cases are going unsolved.

"That makes us worry more for not only ourselves as indigenous women, but it makes us worry for our children,” Haskins said.

Menikanakhem members said it's an uncomfortable topic that must be talked about.

"I think indigenous women have always had like through colonization and capitalization this dollar sign on our back,” Member Kristyn Welch said.

That’s why they're hosting a panel discussion on December 12th to raise awareness about missing and murdered indigenous women, like Rae Tourtillott, whose family has waited decades for answers about her death.

"If we have more preventative things put in place that's what's going to help us as people save our women and our children,” Haskins said.

They’re hoping the panel discussion next month will educate attendees and uplift them.

The event will be held at the College of Menominee Nation from 1pm to 3pm.

It will be at the cultural learning center.

A voter’s registration table will be set up as well.



 
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